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COVID-19 Business Resource Guide For Business, Nonprofits, Self-Employed and Employees
Our thoughts are with all who have been impacted by the recent outbreak of COVID-19. As business owners and leaders, it is important to remain informed and prepared as this outbreak continues to impact our local and global communities. The Economic DevelopmentCollaborative has compiled a list of resources now available for employers, non-profits, self-employed individuals and employees who have been impacted by COVID-19.
Most Recent Announcements
Health Order Updates
Ventura County VCEmergency Updates
Please be advised, the SBA has stopped receiving Pay Check Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) applications. More money may be approved for these programs at a later date although we are not certain. Please continue to check back for more information. Click through for additional resources. Need Help? Call our Business Resource Hotline. English 805.409.9159. Spanish 805.309.5874
4-16-2020 Communications update:
Sobering news this morning as we have heard that due to legal limitations on distributing funds once programs have reached their capacity limit, the SBA has decided to close the door to further Pay Check Protection Program (PPP) and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL) distributions. We anticipate that there may be more money approved by congress for both programs, although we do not know this for sure, but we will keep all partners and clients aware of any new information we may have on these programs. Note: Applications for both programs that have been received so far will continue to be processed on a first come first serve basis
For now, please anticipate many people to be distressed due to this news. We encourage all to demonstrate patience and perseverance as we wait to hear of potential funding of these programs in the days to come.
We encourage all to direct businesses still looking for funding sources to the following programs:
1. The State of California has released a Small Business Disaster Loan Fund Guarantee Program. This program, backed by IBANK, is intended to provide loans to businesses impacted by COVID-19. Please note, IBANK is not a direct lender which means that businesses seeking capital will need to find lenders that are participating in this program. While this can be a viable option for some businesses, we do not yet have a current list of participating lenders. We will be researching this and report back on any information we may find in the next few days. See more here.
2. EDC’s Disaster Loan Fund. See here.
3. WEV’s Quick Response Loan. See here.
If you are aware of any local funding opportunities to support the business community at this time, please let us know.
The Executive Department of the State of California has issued a “Shelter in Place” Order.The order allows for businesses that are among “critical infrastructure sectors” to remain open.Governor Newsom released six indicators that are intended to help modify the stay at home order and guide the state towards reopening. Note: no timeline for reopening certain industry sectors has been announced. More information can be found here.
PUBLIC HEALTH ORDERS FOR VENTURA COUNTY- ACTIVE UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
The Ventura County Public Health Department has issued a “Stay Well at Home” order. We encourage all citizens to adhere to this directive.
PUBLIC HEALTH ORDERS FOR SANTA BARBARA COUNTY- ACTIVE UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department has issued a “Stay at Home” order. We encourage all citizens to adhere to this directive.
VC Emergency http://www.vcemergency.com/
County of Santa Barbara https://www.countyofsb.org/
California Department of Public Health https://www.cdph.ca.gov/
California Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development https://business.ca.gov/coronavirus-2019/
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html
BUSINESS RESOURCES AND ASSISTANCE
IMMEDIATE STEPS TO TAKE
As the spread and impact of COVID-19 is still an unknown, EDC recommends employers to take the following action steps:
1. CONTACT YOUR INSURANCE PROVIDER- Do you have business interruption insurance? If so, you may have coverage that supplements any income or sales loss during this time.
2. APPLY FOR UNEMPLOYMENT- If you have lost hours or wages due to the impact of COVID-19,
we encourage you to file for unemployment benefits. Apply for unemployment here.
3. TRACK LOSSES- During moments of disruption it is important to track any loss your business may have incurred as programs designed to assist cash flow needs and access to capital depend on accurate counts of economic injury and production loss.
4. REVIEW YOUR SUPPLY CHAIN. HAS YOUR BUSINESS EXPERIENCED DISRUPTION OR
CONCERN IN THE FOLLOWING AREAS?
• Questions or concerns about the implications of tariffs
• Supply chain disruption and liability
• Technology plans for setting up remote work stations for employees
• Concerns about cash flow during disruption
• Concerns about credit and finance issues
• Concerns about force majeure
WORK SHARING PROGRAM
This EDD program allows employers to seek an alternative to layoffs – retaining their trained employees by reducing their hours and wages that can be partially offset with UI benefits. Visit the Work Sharing Program to learn more about its benefits for employers and employees, and how to apply.
If you have lost hours or wages due to the impact of COVID-19, we encourage you to file for unemployment benefits. The CARES Act (Pandemic Unemployment Assistance) increases the premium over the usual rates of unemployment insurance and extends the length of unemployment benefit terms. The Act provides an additional $600 increase over an applicant’s approved weekly benefit through July 31, 2020. Additionally, unemployment benefits have been extended for a period of 39 weeks. Apply for unemployment here.
Update: Pandemic Unemployment Assistance has now been extended to all self-employed individuals. For more information about turnaround times and payments click here.
PAID FAMILY LEAVE EMPLOYER REQUIREMENTS
The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA or Act) requires certain employers to provide their employees with paid sick leave or expanded family and medical leave for reasons related to COVID-19 beginning April 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020. For more information visit the Department of Labor’s website. More questions? Visit the Department of Labor’s Q &A page.
PAYROLL TAX FILING EXTENSION
Current provision allows employers statewide directly affected by COVID-19 may request up to a 60-day extension of time from the EDD to file their state payroll reports and/or deposit payroll taxes without penalty or interest. For more information please visit the EDD website. NOTE: The CARES act allows businesses to delay the payment of 2020 payroll taxes until 2021 and 2022. More information to follow.
STATE EXTENSION FILING PERSONAL AND BUSINESS TAXES
The Franchise Tax Board announced special tax relief for California taxpayers affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Affected taxpayers are granted an extension to file 2019 California tax returns and make certain payments to June 15, 2020, for all tax filings and payments due between March 15, 2020, through June 15, 2020. For more information please visit the Franchise Tax Board website.
FEDERAL EXTENSION FILING PERSONAL AND BUSINESS TAXES
Taxpayers can defer federal income tax payments due on April 15, 2020, to July 15, 2020, without penalties and interest, regardless of the amount owed. This deferment applies to all taxpayers, including individuals, trusts and estates, corporations and other non-corporate tax filers as well as those who pay self-employment tax. Taxpayers do not need to file any additional forms or call the IRS to qualify for this automatic federal tax filing and payment relief. For more information please visit the IRS website.
90 DAY GRACE PERIOD FOR MORTGAGE PAYMENTS
Governor Newsom has announced a grace period for mortgage payments. Financial institutions will offer, consistent with applicable guidelines, mortgage payment forbearances of up to 90 days to borrowers economically impacted by COVID-19. For more information, please visit this link.
The U.S. Small Business Administration offers low-interest federal disaster loans for working capital to small businesses suffering substantial economic injury as a result of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Under the CARES act, the existing loan has been expanded. Key features include:
- Up to $2,000,000, up to 30-year terms, 2.75% for nonprofits, 3.75% for all other businesses, including independent contractors, self-employed.
- No restrictions on types of nonprofit firms eligible (though final guidance pending).
- Waives personal guarantees and requirement for at least one year in business for applications for less than $200,000
- Includes provision for an up-front payment of up to a $10,000 grant for successful applicants.
Applicants may apply online. Applicants may also call (800) 659-2955 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Individuals who are deaf or hard-of-hearing may call (800) 877- 8339. Completed applications should be mailed to U.S. Small Business Administration, Processing and Disbursement Center, 14925 Kingsport Road, Fort Worth, TX76155.
NOTE: THE FILING DEADLINE FOR ECONOMIC INJURY LOANS IS DECEMBER 16, 2020.
NOTE: IF YOU APPLIED FOR THE EIDL LOAN BEFORE MARCH 29, 2020, WE ENCOURAGE YOU TO RE-APPLY. APPLICATIONS SUBMITTED BEFORE 3/29/2020 DID NOT INCLUDE THE $10,000 GRANT OPPORTUNITY.
ADDITIONALLY, THE SBA HAS IMPLEMENTED AUTOMATIC DEFERMENT ON EXISTING SBA DISASTER LOANS THROUGH THE END OF 2020. IF YOU HAVE AN EXISTING SBA LOAN YOU DO NOT NEED TO REQUEST DEFERMENT. (SEE ATTACHED SBA FACT SHEETS FOR MORE INFORMATION)
This SBA loan program may be accessed through any bank that currently issues SBA 7a guarantee loans. Check with your local bank to see if they are an approved lender. The new loan program will be available retroactive from Feb. 15, 2020, so employers can rehire their recently laid-off employees through June 30, 2020. NOTE: For more information please visit the SBA website.
KEY FEATURES OF PPP:
- Eligible businesses: All small businesses, including nonprofits, Veterans organizations, Tribal concerns, sole proprietorships, self-employed individuals, and independent contractors, with 500 or fewer employees, or no greater than the number of employees set by the SBA as the size standard for certain industries
- Maximum loan amount up to $10 million
- The loan will be fully forgiven if proceeds are used for payroll costs and other designated business operating expenses in the 8 weeks following the date of loan origination
- All loans under this program will have the following identical features:
- An interest rate of 1%
- Maturity of 2 years
- First payment deferred for six months
- 100% guarantee by SBA
- No collateral
- No personal guarantees
- No borrower or lender fees payable to SBA
In addition to our traditional EDC loan funds, EDC is offering 4.25% interest loans from $5,000-
$50,000 through our Disaster Loan Fund to give a cash flow boost to businesses impacted by reduced sales, supply chain disruption or other challenges related to COVID-19. This is a 48- month loan, with interest-only payments for the first three months. Call 805.409.9159 for more information.
WEV’S Quick Response Loan is designed to provide financial support to businesses experiencing economic hardship. Loans of up to $10,000, with a 4.5% fixed interest rate and36 month repayment term are available to eligible businesses. Visit WEV’s website for more information.
Applicants must be a resident of Ventura or Los Angeles County The Jewish Free Loan Association is offering no-interest quick response loans to those who have been impacted by COVID-19. Loans can be applied for business economic injury, childcare costs and much more. Visit their website for more information.
CA Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development COVID-19 Business Resources
The California’s Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development has released information on their website for employees and employers impacted by COVID-19. Visit their website for more information.
SBA COVID-19 BUSINESS GUIDE
The SBA has released a comprehensive guide to help businesses plan and respond to the current COVID-19 threat. Visit the SBA website for more information.
Note: This information is not intended to be used as medical advice. Please contact your local health professional or visit the CDC website for further information.
Actively encourage sick employees to stay home:
Employees who have symptoms of acute respiratory illness are recommended to stay home and not come to work until they are free of fever (100.4° F [37.8° C] or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g. cough suppressants).
Employees should notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick.
Ensure that your sick leave policies are flexible and consistent with public health guidance and that employees are aware of these policies.
Talk with companies that provide your business with contract or temporary employees about the importance of sick employees staying home and encourage them to develop non- punitive leave policies.
Do not require a healthcare provider’s note for employees who are sick with acute respiratory
illness to validate their illness or to return to work, as healthcare provider offices and medical facilities may be extremely busy and not able to provide such documentation in a timely way.
Employers should maintain flexible policies that permit employees to stay home to care for a sick family member. Employers should be aware that more employees may need to stay at home to care for sick children or other sick family members than is usual.
Separate sick employees:
CDC recommends that employees who appear to have acute respiratory illness symptoms (i.e. cough, shortness of breath) upon arrival to work or become sick during the day should be separated from other employees and be sent home immediately. Sick employees should cover their noses and mouths with a tissue when coughing or sneezing (or an elbow or shoulder if no tissue is available).
Emphasize staying home when sick, respiratory etiquette and hand hygiene by all employees: Place posters that encourage staying home when sick, cough and sneeze etiquette, and hand hygiene at the entrance to your workplace and in other workplace areas where they are likely to be seen.
Provide tissues and no-touch disposal receptacles for use by employees.
Instruct employees to clean their hands often with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60-95% alcohol, or wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.
Provide soap and water and alcohol-based hand rubs in the workplace. Ensure that adequate supplies are maintained. Place hand rubs in multiple locations or in conference rooms to encourage hand hygiene. Visit the coughing and sneezing etiquette and clean hands webpage for more information.
Perform routine environmental cleaning:
Routinely clean all frequently touched surfaces in the workplace, such as workstations, countertops, and doorknobs. Use the cleaning agents that are usually used in these areas and follow the directions on the label.No additional disinfection beyond routine cleaning is recommended at this time. Provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (for example, doorknobs, keyboards, remote controls, desks) can be wiped down by employees before each use
Advise employees before traveling to take certain steps:
Check the CDC’s Traveler’s Health Notices for the latest guidance and recommendations for each country to which you will travel. Specific travel information for travelers going to and returning from China, and information for aircrew, can be found on the CDC website. Advise employees to check themselves for symptoms of acute respiratory illness before starting travel and notify their supervisor and stay home if they are sick.
Ensure employees who become sick while traveling or on temporary assignment understand that they should notify their supervisor and should promptly call a healthcare provider for advice if needed.
If outside the United States, sick employees should follow your company’s policy for obtaining medical care or contact a healthcare provider or overseas medical assistance company to assist them with finding an appropriate healthcare provider in that country. A U.S. consular officer can help locate healthcare services. However, U.S. embassies, consulates, and military facilities do not have the legal authority, capability, and resources to evacuate or give medicines, vaccines, or medical care to private U.S. citizens overseas.